Resurrected Entertainment

PGP: Source Code and Internals

April 28, 2008

PGP BookMy copy finally arrived the other day and I am elated. Now, before you make another hasty buying decision based solely on my opinion, and on a single line of text, there are a couple of things worth mentioning about the book. First and foremost, the book does lack a few structural elements like plot and little things like paragraphs. Having read about the history of Philip Zimmerman and his toil with the U.S. government, I already knew this before I purchased the book.

It does contain source code. Lots of code. The entire PGP program, in fact, including the project files. The book was sent to print because the digital privacy laws the government was attempting to enact at the time, did not cover the printed page. If all you want is the source code, you can simply find it on the Internet. Looking for a specific version, especially an older version, is more difficult and may be fraught with export restrictions.

The story behind the printing of the book is a fascinating history lesson and one we should all be concerned about, even if you live in another country, since we all know governments are not terribly adept at learning from their mistakes.

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